Since 1996, NitraLife has been manufacturing and marketing nitrogen generators. The primary target market has been the tyre inflation market in mining, long-haul transport and the retail sector. Then, some three years ago, in 2016, NitraLife developed the NitraCut generator to supply the owners of fibre laser cutters with nitrogen.
Even more recently, the company developed the NitraSpray nitrogen generator, which is specifically designed for professional spray painting as well as other industrial uses.
“Compressed air has been the transport medium for spray painting since the inception of the technique. However, air has some disadvantages in that it often contains particulate matter, traces of oil and, most importantly, moisture. These three factors affect the quality of the paint finish and result in commonly occurring blemishes such as ‘fish eyes’ and pinholes,” says Tom Sowry, managing director, NitraLife.
According to Sowry, while most panel-beating shops have sophisticated filtration systems in their air-lines, the level of purity these filters achieve comes nowhere close to the cleanliness and purity of compressed nitrogen.
The NitraSpray, he says, effectively filters output down to 0.01 µm, maintaining a consistent level of purity throughout.
Reports from NitraLife’s NitraSpray customers feature paint savings that are in the order of 10%. However, NitraLife recently installed a NitraSpray at a leading vehicle canopy manufacturer. When this installation was carried out, NitraLife undertook careful digital measurements and the data collected proved paint savings of 15%.
“The major advantage that the NitraSpray generators have is that they employ a basic principle of physics to extract pure nitrogen from the air. When spray painters use compressed nitrogen, they are able to spray at a lower pressure, where overspray is dramatically reduced, which results in significantly reduced paint consumption,” says Sowry.
Factors such as overspray and paint blemishes are a major cause of rework, extra cost and lost time. And with the use of NitraSpray nitrogen, a spray painter can significantly improve productivity.